United States Constitution Project Ideas for High School

Instructor: Maria Airth

Maria has a Doctorate of Education and over 20 years of experience teaching psychology and math related courses at the university level.

Are you studying the United States Constitution? The projects listed in this asset offer great opportunities for high school students to think critically about the U.S. Constitution and to come to a very deep understanding of this important document.

Projects Related to the United States Constitution

The United States Constitution is an important document listing the desires of our founding fathers for our government. The country was built on the rules agreed upon in the Constitution. All students should be familiar with the U.S. Constitution, because those things in the Constitution and the amendments that are designed to change the Constitution impact everyone's daily life.

The projects listed here are designed to help high school students gain a deep understanding of the U.S. Constitution.

Obsolete or Applicable

This project requires students to review the current Constitution and its amendments to determine how applicable they are to today's society.

Materials

  • Access to copies of the U.S. Constitution and its amendments

Instructions

  • Students will review each article of the Constitution and its amendments.
  • For each item, students will:
    • Indicate whether the item is obsolete, applicable as is or applicable with modification.
    • Write a brief argument supporting the previous opinion; this includes explaining what modifications might be required if the student has chosen this option.
  • For example, the Third Amendment deals with preventing governments from housing troops in private homes. This was an important issue at the time it was written, but things have changed greatly since then. A student might respond:
    • This amendment is obsolete and should be removed from the Constitution.
    • The reason this is obsolete is because there are so many military bases in existence today, the government would never need to house troops in private homes, so it is a waste of space to have the amendment listed in the Constitution.
  • While students should be free to argue their points, it is recommended that they use strong evidence to support their stance in each instance.

Alternative for Group Work

  • If possible, students may enjoy working on this assignment in pairs. This will allow for some debate over each item as to its current applicability.

Teach it in a Song

It is well-known that songs make difficult concepts easier to learn. This project encourages students to use this knowledge.

Materials

  • Access to copies of the U.S. Constitution
  • (Optional) Instrumental music or rhythmic music
    • Students may find their own pieces, but should be aware of copyright concerns
  • Access to the internet or education videos

Instructions

  • Students should view a few music videos created for educational purposes (these can be found on the internet).
    • If you are having difficulty finding a video, try searching for multiplication songs for an example.
  • Now, students should review the Constitution and its amendments with the idea of creating a catchy song to educate others about this important document.
  • Finally, students should write a song that gives all the pertinent information required about the Constitution. The song should include:
    • Historical information about the creation of the Constitution
    • Information about each amendment in order
  • Students should create a music video or other type of performance of their song.
    • If possible, attempt to have an audience for the performance.

Alternative

  • This project can be accomplished in small groups as well as individually.

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